T.J. Watt’s locker is hidden away in the front corner of the Steelers’ locker room at the Rooney Sports Complex.
Just poke your head in without peering around and you might not notice him. And that’s the way he likes it. Watt doesn’t exactly like attention.
But it’s getting harder and harder to avoid — almost like a Watt sack.
He has 10.5 in 10 games this season, including at least half a sack in seven consecutive games. That’s the longest current streak in the NFL and the second-longest in team history behind LaMarr Woodley’s 10 consecutive games accrued over the course of the 2009 and 2010 seasons.
No doubt, people are taking notice of the youngest of the three Watt brothers and the next in a long line of great Steelers outside linebackers.
“T.J., his relentless effort, he’s a physical guy,” said Bengals head coach Zach Taylor, whose team faces the tall task of blocking Watt Sunday in Cincinnati. “He gives everything he’s got every snap. Really, you see that from the whole defense. You start with the front and move it all the way back.
“Him and ( Bud) Dupree on the edges cause problems. You’ve got Cam (Heyward) inside. You’ve got plenty of depth everywhere. They’ve done a really nice job defensively, playing with a lot of energy and creating a lot of turnovers and swaying some of these games for them.”
The Steelers’ defense seems to feed off Watt’s energy.
“T.J’s been playing well for us,” said defensive coordinator/outside linebackers coach Keith Butler. “He studies the game. He makes his teammates accountable. He’s a good team player and teammate. He does have an effect on our defense.
“He’s probably got to play the run game a little better, but I wouldn’t trade him.”
It used to be J.J. Watt, the eldest of the Connie and John Watt’s three sons, was the player NFL teams feared the most. And for good reason. After all, J.J. Watt has won NFL Defensive Player of the Year three times.
But T.J. Watt has positioned himself to be in that conversation this season with his 10.5 sacks, 35 tackles, four forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries and league-best 22 quarterback hits.
The scary thing for opponents is that Watt, who just turned 25 in October, is still getting better.
“I’d be a fool to say I’m where I want to be. I’m just trying to maximize my potential week in and week out,” Watt told …read more
Source:: Daily Times